Good morning, NBC News readers.
We start today looking at the ambitious agenda President Joe Biden laid out in his first big speech to Congress.
Here's the latest on that and everything else we're watching this Thursday morning.
Biden urges Congress to turn 'crisis' into 'opportunity'
President Joe Biden painted a nation on the mend, recovering from the pandemic but still in need of a big boost from the federal government, in his first address to Congress on Wednesday as he seeks to shift his focus beyond Covid nearly 100 days into his administration.
Biden said he was there to speak to Congress not just about "crisis" but also about "opportunity," pitching $4 trillion of ambitious investments in the economy and social safety net programs that he argued were necessary to compete on the global stage and said would reduce deficits in the long run.
"Now, after just 100 days, I can report to the nation: America is on the move again. Turning peril into possibility. Crisis into opportunity. Setbacks into strength," he said.
Dig into more of our in-depth coverage:
- A populist pitch: Five key takeaways from Biden's speech
- The Republican response: GOP Sen. Tim Scott criticized Biden's plans and said Democrats "are pulling us further apart."
- Off the cuff: Biden veered off script to thank Sen. Mitch McConnell, his main antagonist in Congress, but otherwise made few bipartisan overtures.
- Analysis: Offering a stark choice for the GOP, Biden revealed the limits to his patience, writes NBC News' senior national political reporter Jonathan Allen.
- That was just the first sales pitch: Here are the five Cabinet members who are now tasked with selling the American Families Plan to the public.
- Missed it? Watch Biden's full speech here
- Historic first: Watch Biden acknowledge 'Madame Vice President'
Thursday's top stories
As India runs out of space to cremate the dead, a volunteer weeps with the bereaved
While the U.S. seems to be finally turning a corner on the pandemic, India is buckling under the weight of a terrifying surge in Covid-19 deaths. Photos and video of mass cremations have come to symbolize the country’s struggle. "People die in front of our eyes every day. These are people who should have been saved," said a volunteer with a group that offers cremations to the poor. By Rhea Mogul | Read more
Death of California man who was pinned facedown by police draws comparisons to that of George Floyd
Mario Gonzalez, 26, died in police custody after Alameda County officers pinned him facedown on the ground for five minutes. His family and their attorney say his death is eerily similar to that of George Floyd. "These Alameda police officers killed Mario literally while the jury was debating Derek Chauvin's murder charges," his family's lawyer said. By Janelle Griffith | Read more
3 men charged with federal hate crimes in killing of Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia
By Tim Fitzsimons | Read more
Three Georgia men previously charged in the killing of Ahmaud Arbery will he was jogging in Georgia last year were indicted Wednesday by a federal grand jury and charged with hate crimes and attempted kidnapping. The Department of Justice alleged Wednesday that the men confronted Arbery "because of his race." By Tim Fitzsimons | Read more
OPINION: Joe Rogan says don't do anything stupid. That starts with listening to his Covid advice.
Rogan may play for laughs on his podcast, but none of his Covid jokes are funny, a group of doctors argue. By Dr. Esther Choo, Dr. Megan Ranney, Dr. Anand Swaminathan | Read more
U.S. Postal Service to consolidate 18 facilities, leading to concerns over mail delays
Postal workers and advocates for rural communities fear delivery delays, but the Postal Service said the consolidations will provide for "more efficient and reliable performance." By Mary Pflum | Read more
BETTER: Anxious? Get tips, tools and advice to help you stress less and stay calm
Tips, tools and advice you need to better manage stress so that it doesn't affect your health. Read more
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Also in the news ...
- Blocked release of bodycam video in Brown case highlights North Carolina law
- Shortage of delivery drivers means some gas station pumps could run dry
- 'Distortion of information': Canadian diplomats say their government is withholding info on more 'Havana Syndrome' brain injury cases
- Weapons of mass destruction charge added for 3 accused in Michigan governor kidnap plot
- New report finds 169 percent surge in anti-Asian hate crimes during the first quarter
- Elliot Page breaks down sharing his most joyful moment since coming out as trans
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One life well lived
Michael Collins, a member of the Apollo 11 mission that landed on the moon, died Wednesday. He was 90.
As Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin planted humanity's first bootprints on the moon, Collins stayed behind to pilot the command module, circling roughly 60 miles above the lunar surface.
Collins himself never stepped foot on the moon, but he took no issue with that and was rightfully proud of his accomplishments that contributed to what remains one of the most famous space missions in history.
"Well, sure I wish I could have walked on the moon but I can say with the utmost honesty, I was thrilled to have the place that I had, to be one third of John F. Kennedy's culminating dream," Collins told Harry Smith on TODAY in 2019 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the daring mission. "So I have absolutely no beef whatsoever."
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